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Friday, September 12, 2014

NOAH (2014)

Darren Aronofsky courted controversy simply by retelling the biblical flood fable everyone thinks they know. Of course, embellishment & elaboration on the shards of story found in the text are needed, but Aronofsky went too Gaia; or too Creator vs ‘Lord Our God (or G_d)'; even too vegetarian. He definitely went too Michael Bay-TRANSFORMERS. But perhaps all the misdirected attention was something of a blessing. Since, with the media fixated on busted budgets, reshoots & the thinning Paramount Pictures release schedule, no one bothered to notice what an over-produced load of manure this was. (No wonder with so much of the stuff on hand.) With generally lousy perfs (the usual post-Method acting whispers); bungled action direction; CGI overkill from the deluge and even in a raindrop POV shot as it falls from the heavens to land on Russell Crowe’s grizzled cheek. Then, halfway thru, the parched storyline fails resuscitation with a stowaway, some baldly motivated sibling rivalry & a plot grab from Abraham & Isaac a few chapters away.

WATCH THIS, NOT THAT: John Huston’s THE BIBLE: IN THE BEGINNING . . . /’66. This uneven, magnificent mess of a film locates a fierce Old Testament tone which sets up the story of Noah (played by Huston) to work as light relief, a breather amid annihilation.

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